Organizers from the Housing Rights Committee of San Francisco, San Francisco Tenants Union, Senior & Disability Action, AIDS Housing Alliance, Causa Justa::Just Cause, Chinatown Community Development Center, Occupy Bernal, Occupy Action Council SF, and other supporters gathered at 12:00 noon on December 19, 2012, to protest a rash of Ellis Act evictions of tenants living in San Francisco. A number of tenants spoke to the crowd in front of the Christmas tree on Castro Street near 18th Street, explaining how they are facing eviction in neighborhoods all over San Francisco when property owners use the Ellis Act to take the property off the rental market as an excuse for evicting them from their homes, including some who are seniors, disabled, living with AIDS, and/or have lived in their homes for decades. Representatives of various organizations spoke and the crowd chanted, displaying protest signs and banners.
Senior and Disability Action and the Grey Panthers announced that they plan to move their money out of Wells Fargo due to Wells’ policies with regard to foreclosures and evictions of senior and disabled folks. Protestors from those and other supportive groups such as Poor Magazine, Occupy Noe, Occupy Bernal, Occupy Action Council SF, and the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) gathered at the Wells Fargo bank branch at 1 Grant Avenue in San Francisco at noon on December 18, 2012. Foreclosure and Eviction Fighters including Kathy Galves spoke at the rally.
Update as of 3:57pm on December 6, 2012: The protest was an amazing success as more than 60 organizers occupied and shut down the Bayview branch of Wells Fargo in San Francisco as part of a nationwide Occupy Our Homes anniversary day of actions. The protestors chanted “Stop the Evictions, Stop the Foreclosures”, “Save the Wells 27” (click on the link to call and email in support of the 27 San Francisco families at risk of Wells Fargo foreclosures and evictions during the holiday season), and other slogans, as well as decorating the interior and exterior of the bank branch with crime scene tape, displaying banners and placards, and chalking body shapes and slogans on the sidewalk in front of the branch.
Wells Fargo security closed the bank branch and contacted the San Francisco Police Department and eventually the nonviolent protestors voluntarily departed from the bank branch after delivering demands to the bank manager. Then, a number of Foreclosure and Eviction Fighters and representatives from organizations such as the National Association for the Advancement of Color People (NAACP) spoke to the crowd assembled in front of the branch and demanded an end to predatory foreclosures, short sales, and evictions, as well as demanding that Wells Fargo provide fair deal loan modifications for all homeowners, particularly those who are elderly, disabled, have school-age children or life-threatening illnesses, during the holiday season and beyond.
ACCE members, Occupy Bernal, Occupy Noe, Occupy Action Council SF, Senior and Disability Action, and Allies,
The movement for housing justice and bank accountability continues. We have had many victories and saved many homes, but the Big Banks continue to operate as “Community Killers”, wreaking havoc on our families and neighborhoods. It’s time to demand Wells Fargo and other big banks fix the economy by addressing the massive underwater crisis facing California. It’s time for the resetting of mortgages to fair market value.
What: Don’t Sell Californians Short — Affordable Mortgages, NOT Short Sales! Justice for the Wells 26! No Holiday Foreclosures or Evictions! Speeches by Wells Fargo Foreclosure and Eviction Fighters Larry Faulks and Bernetta Adolph.
When: Thursday, December 6th 10:30am
Where: Meet at Bayview KFC parking lot, intersection of 3rd St. and Jerrold
December 6th is the one year anniversary of Occupy Our Homes, a movement led by Occupy activists and community group allies that has helped to create the political will for a stronger settlement between the Attorney General and the 5 largest banks, as well as passage of Californians landmark foreclosure prevention bill, the CA Homeowner Bill of Rights.
A recent report by the independent monitor of the CA AG settlement showed that the “relief” banks banks claim to be providing is based more on Short Sales than anything else. We demand mortgage relief that KEEPS CALIFORNIANS IN OUR HOMES!